SUPPLY CHAIN

Inditex Group deploying Checkpoint’s RFID technology in distribution centers

BY Dan Berthiaume

Thorofare, N.J. — Checkpoint Systems has been selected by global retailing giant Inditex Group to implement radio frequency identification (RFID) technology into its distribution centers.

Inditex’s RFID implementation project was recently unveiled by chairman and CEO Pablo Isla at the company’s annual general meeting.

Checkpoint provides the massive item-level encoding solution of RFID labels at Inditex distribution centers for garments in boxes, pallets and hanging items at a speed in line with Inditex’s logistics needs. The high-speed bulk encoding solution, which combines hardware and software, is designed to ensure the highest levels of accuracy and encoding speed without needing to manually open boxes and handle individual garments. RFID label encoding means that Inditex products are associated with a unique code allowing the apparel retailer to manage its inventory automatically.

Checkpoint’s solution also enables Inditex to automate the sending of garments from the distribution centers to the stores, avoiding any possible packing mistakes in quantity, model, size or color. The RFID solution automatically checks the accuracy of the content of the boxes regardless of the packing format — with a high level of precision and at a high speed — in line with Inditex demands before they are sent to the stores.

The RFID project is already active in more than 700 Zara stores in 22 countries. According to Isla, "Implementation of this next-generation technology is one of the most significant changes ever in how the Group’s stores operate."

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REAL ESTATE

DD’s Discounts opens Orlando store

BY Dan Berthiaume

Dublin, Calif. – DD’s Discounts, a division of Ross Stores Inc., will open a new store in Orlando on Sept. 27. The store is located in the Century Plaza.

Including this new location, DD’s Discounts will operate approximately 150 locations in 13 states and is on schedule to complete its expansion plan to open approximately 20 locations in 2014. Together, Ross Dress for Less and DD’s Discounts currently operate more than 1,300 off-price apparel and home fashion stores in 33 states, the District of Columbia and Guam.

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FINANCE

Tiffany to issue $500 million in senior notes

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – Tiffany &Co. plans to offer two series of senior notes, one due in 2024 and one due in 20144, for a total of $500 million. The initial purchasers of the notes are expected to be Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc., Goldman, Sachs & Co., BNY Mellon Capital Markets LLC, J.P. Morgan and Mizuho Securities.

Tiffany plans to use the proceeds to redeem several series of senior notes due between 2015-2019, and use any additional proceeds for general corporate purposes. The company expects a debt extinguishment charge, which will reduce fiscal 2014 net earnings by approximately $55 million – $70 million and net earnings per diluted share by approximately $0.43 to $0.53.

In addition, Tiffany is seeking commitments to replace its existing $275 million three-year unsecured revolving credit facility maturing in December 2014 and $275 million five-year unsecured revolving credit facility maturing December 2016 with a new $375 million four-year unsecured revolving credit facility and a new $375 million five-year unsecured revolving credit facility. The new credit facilities are expected to close after the closing of the notes offering.

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